Unicoi Farmers Market opens next week in new venue

Published 10:16 am Tuesday, May 26, 2020

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UNICOI — The Unicoi Farmers Market and Community Yard Sale will open June 2 in a new home under the Buffalo Pavilion at the Unicoi Visitor Center. Completed only a month ago, the pavilion was designed specifically for the market and will be a treat for vendors in the coming months.
The market is held every Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Tourist Information Center at exit 32 (off I-26), June through October. New COVID-19 regulations will be in place to protect the public.
COVID prevention measures include required masks, hand-sanitizer at entrance, one-way traffic, disposable food-gloves for testing ripeness of produce, additional space between vendors and customers, and request for exact or small change.
“We won’t be able to use the new pavilion exactly as intended right now because of COVID restrictions,” said Communications and Programs Director Ashley Shelton. “We will have vendors face outward to create a one-way flow of traffic that helps maintain social distancing, but it will still be nice for the vendors to be under roof.”
The market will include fresh fruits, vegetables, and baked goods, as well as local craft vendors, trade-craft demonstrations and yard sale bargains. The Tanasi Art Gallery, located inside the Tourist Information Center, will also be open each week and features work from local artists. Picnic tables surrounding the area will be spaced well more than 6 feet apart so visitors can browse the booths, grab some fresh food then enjoy lunch with a view.
“The combination of the farmers market and yard sale was a big hit for us last year,” said Town of Unicoi Mayor Johnny Lynch. “The variety is what sets us apart from other markets and it’s a treat for travelers that stop to use the visitor center’s facilities.”
Vendor pricing is based on categories. Farm products, prepared food and handmade crafts require a $5 annual market fee. Yard sale booths and demonstration spaces are free but an application must be submitted.
Only one application per season is required and vendors may then call each week to reserve their space by phone. Booth spaces are assigned on a first come, first served basis. Tents, tables, chairs and other equipment will not be provided so please make necessary arrangements prior to the market opening.
For more information or to become a vendor, please email recreationaide@unicoitn.net or contact Patricia Bennett at (423) 735-0517. Vendor applications are available online at unicoitn.net under the event
The Unicoi Farmers Market and Community Yard Sale is held at the Tourist Information Center located at 106 Unicoi Village Place in Unicoi.

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